Light, breathe in and relax... The Spa Spies try out a range of candles to lift your spirits this winter and help get you through lockdown.
420 g | £46.00
Key ingredients: Lavender, jasmine and Brazilian rosewood
First impressions: The Neom Real Luxury Scented Candle comes in a (100% recyclable) large stylish white box with black writing and a blush-blue floral contour, synonymous with the ‘scent to de-stress’ range. The hand-poured candle is made of a creamy, naturally derived wax and has three-wicks. It comes in a simple and chic glass jar, which is rather weighty.
What's it like? Made with a blend of 24 essential oils, the scent envelops you before you even lift the lid - transporting you straight to the spa. Once lit the scent is initially quite subtle, but gradually fills the room (and beyond) with heady jasmine, sweet floral Brazilian rosewood and undertones of lavender. It’s like a big nurturing hug.
Does it work? I found myself horizontal on the sofa within 20 minutes. The scent is so soothing and comforting – emulating the feeling of post-treatment bliss. The simple glass design looks chic and luxurious and the three wicks burned evenly for around 3 hours. I can’t wait to light it again, whenever I need a moment of calm.
Verdict: Perfect for the locked-down winter months, the candle’s indulgent scent gently nudges the shoulders to drop and the mind to unravel. While it is one of the more expensive candles, it’s worth every penny for the scent-alone. It’s also the largest in size and has a 50 hours of burn time.
280 g | £25.00
Key ingredients: Sweet orange and cedarwood.
First impressions: The Comfort Zone Tranquillity Candle comes in a sage-coloured ceramic pot with a label which you can remove. The candle itself is made of creamy wax and has just one wick, making it look very simple and chic.
What's it like? Once lit, the smell is strong enough to infuse the air without being overpowering. After 10 minutes or more, I struggled to detect anything individual in the notes. There is orange, but it smells warm and of musk, rather than citrusy. It reminded me of a really good cologne, warm and sensuous rather than your typical aromatherapy essential oil spa scent (close your eyes and imagine George Clooney has popped over for a cuppa).
Does it work? The rich and alluring scent makes me feel like I’m being wrapped in cashmere. It delivers relaxation with luxurious bells on. It lasted me a few months, and the single wick candle didn't need trimming so the scent was always clean. I must say I looked forward to lighting up.
Verdict: A cosy candle for the colder months with its winter scent. Both the scent and packaging would appeal to both sexes. With 55 hours of burn time – and the fact that it’s from Comfort Zone – make it worth every penny.
200g | £26
Key ingredients: Peppermint, eucalyptus, lime, rosemary.
First impressions: The ESPA Energising Aromatic candle comes in a stylish bronze and white box with distinctive silver writing. The candle itself is encased in thick plain glass with the words ESPA embossed on the front in white. Underneath the candle is a round cork mat to place it on – a practical idea that protects surfaces from dripping wax.
What's it like? The fragrance is strong and citrussy on first smell but – once lit – is much more subtle with fresh, light notes that are extremely pleasant. The packaging suggests the candle should revitalise, enliven and awaken the senses while burning for 40 hours.
Does it work? I lit it before getting into a bubble bath; like the scent, the effect is very subtle – perfect if you don't want to feel too sleepy afterwards. With its fresh, light smell, the ESPA Energising Aromatic Candle would be good to use during the day, too.
Verdict: This is a classy candle that will look lovely in your home. The scent isn't too overpowering, it's good value-for-money and it has a long burn time. What's not to like?
30cl | £29
Key ingredients: Lavender, rose geranium, juniper and lemongrass
First impressions: The ishga Hebridean Dreams Hand Poured Seaweed Candle comes in a clean and simple white box with blue and pink writing and signature seaweed image. The organic candle is made from hand-poured soya wax and comes in a simple glass jar with blue ishga logo and silver lid. Everything is handcrafted on the Isle of Lewis.
What's it like? The blend of lavender, rose geranium, juniper and lemongrass, with a sprinkle of hand-harvested seaweed, is so vibrant that you get a hit just by taking the lid off. Once lit, the candle burned evenly and a fresh spa-like scent filled the whole room, leaving it smelling beautiful for the rest of the day.
Does it work? I lit the candle before I sunk into a hot bath. When the wax started to melt I got hints of seaweed, transporting me straight to the beach. When I finally hauled myself from the bath, I noticed the soothing scent had drifted throughout the house, despite only having it burning for a few hours. A burning time of 40 hours means plenty more hours of escapism for me.
Verdict: This natural beauty brings a little bit of the seaside to your home. Just what we are all need right now. I love it.
200g | £25
Key ingredients: Lavender, petitgrain, geranium, frankincense, chamomile, myrrh, black pepper, dill and patchouli.
First impressions: The Temple Spa Siesta Forever Candle comes in a simple yet chic black square box. Open it up to reveal a weighty glass jar with a shiny chrome lid; take this off and let the calming scent envelop you.
What's it like? Once lit, the soothing scent of the candle quickly fills the room. The smell is complex, relaxing – and very reminiscent of a spa. If you struggle to wind down, burning this for half an hour should help you switch off.
Does it work? The candle burns evenly with the wick staying up and very little flicker (the sign of a good wick). Despite burning it frequently, I’ve barely made a dent (Temple Spa suggest it should burn for 45 hours). At £25 I’d say this is a bargain for a natural smelling, calming candle.
Verdict: Spa heaven in a candle – light it and a world of calm and tranquillity awaits. I’d definitely buy it again.
27th January 2021
Nature-inspired spas, cold water plunges, sound baths, deep tissue massage, delicious food.
Thin walls in treatment rooms, loungers hoggers, bright lights
Behind the scenes